The Making of Easy Practice: The Practice Planner for Parent Coaches

Before jumping in, I wanted to give a huge thanks and congrats to the team here at iSoccer. This took a lot of time and effort by everyone to get us to the finish line. All around, it was a really fun and rewarding project – great work team!

I sincerely hope this app helps parent coaches out there have a more enjoyable season!

So here is a little peek into the process of creating Easy Practice:

Practice Planner - Rooftop Image

#1 FOCUS
The first part of any project is deciding what the product is going to be and more importantly, what the product is not going to be. We focused on a single aspect of coaching: practice. Not game day, not scheduling, not orange slices – But how to make practice more enjoyable for both the coach and the player. That was our sole focus.

#2 BRAINSTORM
Once we decided what we wanted the app to be, we had to figure out how to bring that to life. How should the coach to interact with the app? What are the drills the coach should do? Will they use it on the field or at home? What should it look like… You get the idea! There is a lot to think about, but this is the fun part of the process. Sometimes getting out of the office and heading to the roof helps us think.

Screen Shot 2013-03-22 at 10.12.29 PM

#3 SKETCH AND DESIGN
Once we had a good understanding of the purpose and content, then came the tricky part: How do we design an app that delivers all of this content with an elegant, intuitive design. This took a lot of time and mockups! Gray, our product guy, made sure the app made sense and Aina, our lead designer, made sure the app looked good! Some great teamwork.

#4 BUILD
Our lead engineer, Jonathan, got to work! It is amazing how much code goes into every single app out there…

photo 2#5 TEST AND MAKE CHANGES
We finally had our first working version of the app, so we took it to the field to test. We invited a friend of ours, Jeremy, to be the ‘parent coach.’ He got the drill setup correct but, he was having a tough time finding all the information he needed, and was struggling a bit. It clearly needed work, so back to the office…

#6 TEST AGAIN
We went back and forth between the field and the office a few more times, tweaking things along the way. Finally, we had an app everyone was happy with!

isoccer_team

#7 CREATE FINAL CONTENT
From the copy, to the diagrams, to the videos, we made our final edits.

#8 SUBMIT TO APPLE
Fingers crossed!

#9 CELEBRATE
The app got approved! As with anything in life, you gotta celebrate the little and big wins, so we all hit the town and had fun night out in San Francisco.

In closing, I want to thank all the parents out there dedicating their time and energy to coaching. We know it’s fun and rewarding, but also a lot of work! Hopefully, this app will help make things a little easier for parent coaches out there, and help teams have more fun on the soccer field.

Sincerely,
Scott Leber, Founder of iSoccer and EasyPractice